Opinion

View from the Airport: Oracle OpenWorld 2019

We look back on the key themes and announcements from the tech giant’s annual conference

"Researchers identify cures for cancer. Agro-biologists create smart hives to provide food security for the planet. Aid organisations deliver relief faster. Scientists mitigate climate change and utilities provide safe, cleaner, energy."

These bold statements were the bread and butter of Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco last week. The unifying element between them all? Data. Indeed, the tech giant talked up the value of data and excelling not just existing in a data-driven world during most if not all sessions during the conference.

But it's not just about hoarding data for data's sake or trying to make sense out of that data deluge. Far from it. Oracle's key message was all about using machine learning coupled with human ingenuity so that the "possible becomes achievable." Or, taking it one step further, Oracle claims it can help people achieve the extraordinary.

While this year's OpenWorld was filled with more announcements than last year, the common themes of automation, data-focus, integration, and security permeated. 

The firm unveiled what it claims is the world's first "autonomous OS" named Oracle Autonomous Linux bigging up its security credentials and ensured the importance of partners was not understated. 

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

Despite all the PR and marketing efforts on ensuring those key themes resonated with attendees, the biggest takeaway for me was that of Ellison's personal nod to Mark Hurd's ill-health

Maybe I'm reading far too much into a simple statement of genuine love, but in a world where we are focused on autonomy, machine learning and robotics, this pure act of humanity shone through for me. 

During his closing keynote, about 10 minutes in, Ellison was clearly struggling to hold it all together. So what he said next was really from the heart. 

"I would just like to take a moment and say how much I miss Mark Hurd, personally. We've worked together for a long time, I love him, and I wish him a speedy recovery," he said, to much applause and agreement from the audience.

He then quipped: "I don't have so many friends that I can afford to lose any," before doing his best to continue his presentation about the company's Fusion middleware platform. 

Advertisement - Article continues below

I've been called cynical in my time and, now, I'm ready to be called a sucker, but what Ellison said off-script and away from the military operation that is any tech conference, let alone one of Oracle's was, I believe, totally genuine. 

In a world where tech is so sophisticated, it promises to outpace what humans can do (if it hasn't already in certain cases) it just goes to show how important humans and human connections still are. 

Larry - if you're ready this, you really pulled on my heartstrings. I'll admit I had a lump in my throat during the non-Fusion aspect of this presentation. But I really did see through the Silicon Valley veil and the hurt in your eyes and now I know, at the crux of it all, you're just a guy honestly trying to do good things with technology. 

Featured Resources

Digitally perfecting the supply chain

How new technologies are being leveraged to transform the manufacturing supply chain

Download now

Three keys to maximise application migration and modernisation success

Harness the benefits that modernised applications can offer

Download now

Your enterprise cloud solutions guide

Infrastructure designed to meet your company's IT needs for next-generation cloud applications

Download now

The 3 approaches of Breach and Attack Simulation technologies

A guide to the nuances of BAS, helping you stay one step ahead of cyber criminals

Download now
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/network-internet/34596/bt-unveils-barrage-of-new-business-services
Network & Internet

BT unveils barrage of new business services

9 Oct 2019
Visit/network-internet/33885/zyxel-nebula-control-center-2019-review-takes-all-the-pain-out-of-networking
Network & Internet

Zyxel Nebula Control Center 2019 review

21 Jun 2019

Most Popular

Visit/operating-systems/25802/17-windows-10-problems-and-how-to-fix-them
operating systems

17 Windows 10 problems - and how to fix them

13 Jan 2020
Visit/business-strategy/mergers-and-acquisitions/354602/xerox-to-nominate-directors-to-hps-board-reports
mergers and acquisitions

Xerox to nominate directors to HP's board – reports

22 Jan 2020
Visit/microsoft-windows/32066/what-to-do-if-youre-still-running-windows-7
Microsoft Windows

What to do if you're still running Windows 7

14 Jan 2020
Visit/web-browser/30394/what-is-http-error-503-and-how-do-you-fix-it
web browser

What is HTTP error 503 and how do you fix it?

7 Jan 2020